Conversion Optimization TechniquesIt’s no secret that your landing pages are and should be a crucial part of optimizing your website for conversions. At the same time, focusing only on that final step toward a lead conversion is a mistake. In fact, here are 5 conversion optimization tips that go beyond your landing pages.

1) Streamlining Your Navigation

If you want your website to be optimized for conversions, you better make sure that your audience can find these conversion opportunities easily. Too often, landing pages and other conversion points are not immediately clear on a website’s navigational structure, missing significant opportunities as a result.

Imagine being a potential customer on a website for a brand in which you’re interested. You land on the home page, and begin to read a bit more about it. What’s your next step?

Most visitors tend to look to the navigation for clues. What else should I find out about this brand? So if your navigation doesn’t include any obvious way for your audience to ‘learn more’ or ‘contact us,’ you’re missing a significant conversion opportunity.

2) Designing the Right CTA

Of course, your web design and content matters beyond your navigation. As your audience reads through your website, they’ll become interested in learning more. Call to action buttons and text can help you direct attention to natural ‘next steps’, which will ideally be a conversion-optimized landing page.

These calls to action should lead to landing pages on forms. But even being removed an extra step from the conversion, their focus should be unequivocal.

Effective calls to action should be designed within the overall theme of the site, but (through shape and color) stand out enough from the background to be immediately noticeable. Simplicity is key, as is action-oriented language that goes beyond ‘submit’ and veers toward action verbs like ‘try’, ‘use’, and ‘reserve’ instead.

Ideally, your website should follow the attention ratio principle, first advanced by the conversion experts at Unbounce. It’s simple: the number of conversion goals of your website should be in a 1:1 relationship with the links and calls to action on that page. Each of your individual pages – from your About page to individual blog posts – should have a single conversion goal, and the links and calls to action on that page should correspond with that goal.

3) Finding Conversion Keywords

Keyword research is vital to successful search engine optimization. But too often, brands focus on surface-level metrics that make little difference in actual conversions.

The most common metrics used by SEO professionals are the amount of monthly searches on a given keyword and its competitiveness. Conversions, unfortunately, is considered less often.

The reason for that neglect is generally simple: a lack of trackability. Most keyword research tools include both monthly searches and competitiveness in their results, but – because it requires access to your own analytics – conversions or conversion rate is not considered.

By setting up a comprehensive SEO strategy, you can change that. Google Analytics, for example, tracks the keywords your audience uses to find your website. Set up conversion goal values, and you can begin to see how well each keyword converts. Then, focus your website and landing pages on the keywords that are most likely to generate not just visitors, but leads and customers.

4) Building Consistency Throughout Your Marketing

The worst enemy of your conversion optimization efforts is cognitive dissonance. As soon as your audience feels that they’re receiving conflicting messages about your brand and its benefits, they’ll begin to question your messaging and your credibility will begin to erode.

A large share of your followers may be interested in a boastful claim about your product. But if they navigate to your landing page and find that the truth is not nearly as impressive, they won’t convert. Being honest about your benefits may not get you as many clicks, but your conversion rates will increase significantly.

The same is true on a larger scale, as well. Consistency is at the heart of integrated marketing communications (IMC), a philosophy that strongly believes in the linkage of all your marketing efforts. No member of your target audience will experience your brand in isolation. Instead, they may be exposed to a number of your individual channels and messages. Only a consistent message can ensure that they continue to believe your benefits, and gradually decide to become a lead.

5) Creating a Reason to Convert

Finally, don’t underestimate the actual reason your audience converts to lead: they expect something in return. Even the best landing pages will do little to boost your conversions if the content behind signing up falls short of expectations. To prevent that from happening, your gated content should share these characteristics:

  • Relevance. There is no such thing as perfect content. Your audience will decide what works best for them – your job is to develop content that’s relevant to their unique experience and needs.
  • Value. When your audience downloads or otherwise consumes your content, what do they actually get out of it? Can it tangibly improve their business or solve a need?
  • Uniqueness. Your gated content is worth little if others already offer the exact same thing. Make it unique, and you add another reason for your audience to keep coming back to you instead of your competitors.

Conversion optimization goes far beyond your landing pages. Instead, it should be a philosophy you embrace throughout your website and digital marketing efforts.